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Monday, November 21, 2011

Help Wanted: A (Sexy) Assistant

Greetings and Salutations, Fire Enthusiasts.
How is everyone? Unless we bump into each other on Facebook or Twitter, I don’t get that opportunity to ask. J So, how are you? I ask because I also want to remind myself that these pages shouldn’t be about the incredible blossoming career of the big-shot writer from the little town in Central California – although that would be totally frigging awesome!!

Okay, enough of that.

Help Wanted: An Assistant:

He or she must be media-savvy and fluent with all devices, gizmos and programs. The job pays very little, but the promise of future earnings is potentially very high. The good news is there is no office to report to and one can work from the convenience of their own laptop and/or device. She? Who am I kidding? The applicant must be male, because working with any attractive female would simply be too distracting and the author must be busy writing at all times. Sorry, my female friends. You are all far too attractive and distracting and, um,…

See, I already forgot what we were talking about.

I know all of you are in the very same boat as me. All we wanted to do was write our stories, right? However, it soon became at least one blog that we needed to maintain, followed by a place to promote (Facebook, Twitter, Google +, etc.). From there, new friends began to invite you to other places. For me it was Horror groups and Horror Social Media destinations. If you are a reader or simply want to find the readers in order to market your book, then you’ve been to Goodreads, Shelfari or some other reader-friendly sites.

Of course, many, if not all of us, are now trying to figure out how in the world we’re supposed to maintain our writing and reading schedules with so much time now needed to devote to promotion. In fact, I spotted at least two posts this past weekend questioning that very thing.

I’d love to hear from you this week on this subject. How much time do you devote to promotion? What have you realized needs to be your priorities? Where do you draw the line?

Another question beckons: If we spend less time promoting ourselves on social networks, what about promoting our friends and neighbors?

Thankfully, many sites do a pretty good job of automatically pasting your posts on other sites. Many of you are better at this than I am. Unless a site, post or Network automatically prompts me, I may not know how to get it to post for me. That’s why I say that I’m still learning some of this stuff. If we can program and schedule these things more efficiently, then that gives us more time during the week to promote the works of others.

For me, I am in a constant state of re-evaluation. Every few months or so, I see what works and what doesn’t, and I tweak what I do. While I have a break at work, that’s when I manage my #WW and #FF on Twitter, as well as participate in the Novel Publicity Karmic Friday Chain on Facebook. Everything else I do at home. Unfortunately, for Twitter, if I haven’t conversed with someone in a while, the FollowFriday App. doesn’t pick them up anymore. I try and catch some of these folks during the week (when I see there activity) and toss them a random greeting. For blogs, I try and follow by e-mail notification, where possible. This way I leave their note in my Inbox so I can get back to it that week. I used to go down the blog list, but I rarely get time for that. It’s hard enough finding time to visit the blogs during the week as it is!! And blog hops? Those are great, but you are definitely going to spend your week visiting only those participating in the hop. Have you noticed? In order to share the love, I try and take time off between hops.

Before this post becomes book number three, I’m going to walk away; however, I really would like to hear how you good people manage your time on this subject. Perhaps we’ll help each other. By the way, after every sexy applicant was disqualified, here's who I ended up with. I can see he's going to be a lot of help.

We’ll talk soon.


  1. I woke from a dream where I'd shaved thick hair from my arms. Would this land me the job if I'm actually part werewolf? (^; (There were also rats roaming the house where I was--ick)

    I've found that I have to sign into Twitter now to do anything now, including share a blog I've done. And when I do, I keep getting error messeages. So, I quit doing that. My publisher actually told me that Twitter was a waste of my time. Go figure. But then he might be right!

    I really don't have time for that, anyway!

    I, of course, didn't do NaNo. How do you find time unless you quit your job, tie up your kids, starve your significant other and be a total beast--or my brains would be like the ones in the jar above! I really couldn't do it. It would frustrate my writing style, anyway.

    Blog hops. Yeah. Found these might get me "followers", but I'm still getting 0 to maybe 2 or 3 comments per post I make. I had 76 people stop by my post just yesterday and had 1 comment from a long-time follower. Don't know if that matters so much. I seem to be popular in Russia and Urkane--and yet my sales keep dropping.

    Whatever promoting I do, I don't see it doing much good. Until the next book comes out, I don't think it will.

    Obviously, I have no answers, Jimmy. I'm about as qualified as the bloke in picture above (Igor).

    Don't let this stuff get to you. I'm trying not to. Thanks for the fun post. Talk to you again, next Monday.

  2. I definitely spend more time writing than promoting. I think when we're in this situation, we've got to play to our strengths. For me, I write a lot and simply get it out there. This is my way of promotion--making myself visible with the sheer number of books I have taking up space in all the online bookshops! I have numerous more novels that are already written, waiting to go through the editing process and then to be set free. My plan is that readers won't be able to turn around without falling over a Marissa Farrar title and that's how I'll get noticed!

  3. I know you can't have an attractive female assistant--your wife told me so. ;-)

    I have been doing less promoting and more writing. You're only as good as your last book.

  4. I'm in the same boat as Marissa Farrar. While I try to maintain a baseline of activity on my blog, Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads, I'm putting 80% of my time into editing and writing. You know that saying, "The truth will out"? I've decided to believe the same works for quality. Thus I'm going to believe in the quality of my work, and that those few who read it will eventually spread the good word.

  5. Ha, I saw the post title, "Help Wanted: A (Sexy) Assistant," and I had to see what it was about.

    I'm trying to get better about posting on multiple social sites, but I'm not there yet. It's hard particularly when you have a full time job.

  6. I really need to figure this out too. I have vowed to dedicate some time to it starting early December. If I come across the secret, you'll be the first I tell.

  7. Ugh, you know I feel the time crunch. SO hard.

    Hey, you won the copy of This Brilliant Darkness over at McHugh's blog!

  8. I like Marissa's approach, Jimmy. Of course, it helps if you write as well as she does. I have to get busy myself with this. I have so many things of my own to publish through Vamplit and Angelic Knight Press, but I've been doing a lot of work on the Press. Writing is the easy part for me. Check out Mark Edward Hall's site. He has some great ideas.


  9. I'm the same as you on this, Jimmy. I find myself re-thinking everything every so often. "Right now" I'm at the point where I really just want to write. I miss it! And isn't that what all this promoting is about? I swear with all of the socializing I feel I have to do to keep up with everything, I'd never have anything to promote, except for FB, Twitter, etc.

  10. This is a beautifully refreshing site. Everywhere else I look I am admonished for not doing enough promotion; this groups seems to share my dislike of the endless (and fruitless) promotions. I thought I found a solution by writing a book on line, as a blog, but who knows? Then again, maybe what I simply need is a NON-sexy assistant who would promote for me while I write?

  11. The "latest" promotional concern I've seen is how to reach readers and not just our writer friends (who probably don't have time to read because they're so busy writing and promoting, right? ;) ). One way I've been reaching new readers is by giving away books with my business card in them. Granted, I had to buy these books as part of a ticket to a writing conference (40 copies of Ted Dekker's The Priest's Graveyard), but the idea has merit even if you don't have a book out. I know we all can't get signed by a large publisher who will give use fifty copies of our book to give away. But what if we bought books at the half price book store that are more popular, but similar to our writing, then put our business card in them?

    As for your question, I am lucky enough to write at my day job (security guard), so when my brain is tired at night, that's when I work on my social media and podcasting. Speaking of, I host a podcast, so if people want to advertise, all the time you have to spend is on the phone/skype with me. I take care of the rest. I'm booked for a month, but I'm up for anyone interested to let me know so I can plan for future episodes.

  12. I agree with many of the comments posted.


Thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate you taking the time. I'll get back to you here or on one of the other social networks. It's not like we're not on all of them, right? ;) Also, if you're here to give me an award - bless you. However, your friendship and visits are more than enough. Thanks and blessings.